From Cupcakes to Traditional Korean Food and Everything in Between

Weekend Bits

This weekend marked an epic one as my entire immediate family came to visit.  This was a rare and happy occasion since one of my brothers lives in Seattle.  He also brought his fiancée with him whom I’d never met.  On top of that, we were celebrating my mama’s birthday!  Needless to say, I was brimming with excitement!!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Mama’s specially requested birthday soup {meuntang}

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The birthday cake {raspberry cheesecake}

pasta

J’s stuffed ravioli.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We spent a great deal of time fishing and these were the fruits of our labor.  We caught shrimp, crab, and clams and turned it into a massive seafood boil for supper one night.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Daddy grew up in a fishing town and he’s definitely got the magic touch.  He was so lucky that he even found one while we were swimming.  To the left is mom rubbing her finger because she got too close to the crab.  If I owned a fish eye lens, I could have captured all the chuckling faces.

dave

When we weren’t fishing, we were rocking on the porch watching the sun set and listening to baby brother strum his guitar, gobbling lots of homemade treats and playing my new favorite game.

One of those lazy afternoons, we all discovered these growing right in my backyard.

1 Muscadines and walnuts!  So guess who’s as excited as a kid on Christmas morning?!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We also took a ferry to one of my favorite places in the world, the aquarium.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA My sweet future sister-in-law.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA I miss y’all already!

Love,

Your Squishy Monster ^.~

Salted Caramel Pretzel Brownies

J will be the first to tell you that I’m incapable of exercising moderation, particularly when it comes to good eats.  I’m an all or nothing kind of gal.  Case in point?  These 3 layer brownies.  Homemade salted caramel sauce {a recipe that only takes 3 minutes, by the way} gets generously oozed over the salty bite of crunchy pretzels with a base of rich, dark chocolate brownies.

Salted Caramel Pretzel Brownies Recipe

5.0 from 3 reviews

Salted Caramel Pretzel Brownies
 
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Ingredients
Brownies
  • 1½ c unbleached flour
  • 1 c good, unsweetened dark cocoa
  • 1 ts fine salt
  • 2 sticks soft, unsalted butter
  • 1 c brown sugar + 2 c granulated sugar
  • 1 tb vanilla extract
  • ½ tb instant coffee
  • 4 room temperature eggs
Salted Caramel
  • 1 c brown sugar
  • ½ c half and half
  • 4 tb unsalted butter
  • 1 ts salt
  • ½ ts vanilla extract
Pretzels

Instructions
  1. In the first bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa, and salt.
  2. In the second bowl, cream together the butter and sugars for 3-5 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl.
  3. Blend in the vanilla, coffee, and eggs to the second bowl, adding the eggs one at a time.
  4. In thirds, sprinkle the first bowl into the second, mixing just to combine.
  5. Pour into a well greased pan and bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes.
  6. For the caramel sauce, combine everything together and heat until it gets thick and smooth. Cool at room temperature or in the fridge until ready to use. {Check the link above for a step by step video on this caramel sauce}
  7. To assemble, line the top of the cooled brownies with pretzels then generously drizzle with caramel sauce.

And if you liked this recipe, be sure to check out my chocolate ganache mint brownies or my paleo brownies for a healthier option ;)

Love,

Your Squishy Monster ^.~

Weekend Bits

How I feel every morning I get up:

1morning

 

Weekend Bites:
2pickles Fried pickles {hey, we’re in the south}

3chix

 

Jerk chicken

Best thing on the grill recently?

4broccolini Broccolini!

5pad thai Homemade pad thai and dumplings with J.

A gift from our new neighbor: fresh trigger fish.

6trigger Most beautiful things I saw this weekend: 7boy and father A boy and his father.

8bee A honey bee that reminded me of J {he’s also a bee keeper}.

What I’ve been listening to all weekend:

Alina Baraz – Drift (Prod. by Galimatias)

9sunset And a peek outside that always reveals the most gorgeous sunsets!

Love,

Your Squishy Monster ^.~

Hokey Pokey or Honeycomb Toffee Candy {Easy 5 Minute Recipe}

Oddly enough, one of my highest rated videos is about a 5 minute glass candy recipe.  I’ve since gotten so many requests to do more easy candy videos and it occurred to me that this puffy, spongy candy that I’ve been eating since I was a kid would be a perfect one to do next.  Sometimes referred to as cinder or sponge toffee, I know and love it as hokey pokey.

5 Minute Candy Recipe for Hokey Pokey / Honeycomb Toffee

5.0 from 4 reviews

Hokey Pokey or Honeycomb Toffee Candy {Easy 5 Minute Recipe}
 
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Ingredients
  • ½ c sugar
  • ¼ c corn syrup
  • 1 ts vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 ts soda

Instructions
  1. Dissolve the sugar and syrup in a heavy bottomed pot and bring to a slow bubble for 3-5 minutes.
  2. Add the vanilla and salt.
  3. Prepare a parchment/silpat covered surface and work quickly as you sprinkle in the baking soda. Whisk it together and quickly spread it onto your surface.
  4. Cool and allow to set then break apart.

Love,

Your Squishy Monster ^.~

Key Lime Bars

There’s something about living on this island that makes me crave a number of things everyday.  Ice cream or shaved ice, piña coladas, and lots of fresh citrus.  I can’t deny that I’ve had one or more everyday but rationalize that all the swimming makes it a reasonable choice.  Seems like sound logic to me.

When I spotted these at the farmers market, they begged, no screamed to come home with me.  What I’d do with them, I knew instantly.

Key Lime Bars Recipe

5.0 from 3 reviews

Key Lime Bars
 
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Author:

Ingredients
Crust
  • 5 oz cookies {for me, it was 2 dozen ginger snaps}
  • 4 tb melted, salted butter
Filling
  • 2 oz room temperature cream cheese
  • ½ tb key lime zest
  • 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 room temperature large egg yolk
  • ½ c fresh key lime juice
  • ½ tb unbleached flour

Instructions
  1. For the crust, crush the cookies {you can use graham/animal crackers, ginger snaps, biscotti, etc} and combine with the melted butter. Push onto a pan to form a crush and bake at 350 for 12-14 minutes. Cool.
  2. For the filling, creamy together the cream cheese, zest, and condensed milk. Add the salt and blend in the yolk.
  3. Slowly stream in the lime juice and mix until well combined but make sure not to over mix. You don’t want too much air incorporated into the filling.
  4. Lastly, sprinkle in the flour.
  5. Fill the crust with the filling and bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes. Set on a cooling rack then transfer to the fridge to set for a minimum of 3-4 hours or overnight.

Love,

Your Squishy Monster ^.~

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